After 19 years of being sidelined by injuries and show business opportunities, Stone Cold Steve Austin finally opened one last whoopass box at WrestleMania 38 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.
Austin was supposed to be a guest of a heel wrestler Kevin Owens‘ in the “talk show” ring, but Austin went all Will Smith on the host when Owens got down to talking about Austin’s beloved state of Texas. A referee jumped between the ropes, a bell rang, and the interview turned into Saturday night’s main event.
Austin won by smashing the Owens pillar to post while drinking several cans of his signature beer, Broken Skull IPA. Austin quickly announced his retirement, this time for good, after the game.
This was my 19th WrestleMania, including Mania 17 at the Astrodome and Mania 25 at NRG Stadium. This trip had some bonus excitement. I booked two nights in, say, a cheap motel a few miles from AT&T Stadium. I am not a hotelier. As long as the restroom works and the place is wired, I’m fine. When I woke up Sunday morning and opened the door, the first thing I saw were bumper-to-bumper police cars in the parking lot. I asked someone at the motel what’s going on? He said “as usual”.
The AT&T Stadium press box was filled with 125 esteemed journalists from the United States and around the world. There were hard-hitting journalists from BILD newspaper in Germany, Al Jazeera, Mundo Deportivo, The Kelly Clarkson Show, Bodybuilding and Fitness Magazine, Hollywood lifeThe Athletic, Sirius XM, Bleacher Report and Comicbook.com.
The Kelly Clarkson show? Once I was in Germany and I read a headline on the front page of BILD saying that Queen singer Freddie Mercury was sick. He died the next day. Not all press is good press.
WWE is always packing a bag of goodies for the active press – this year, a souvenir program, WrestleMania commemorative hoodie, premium t-shirt and cap. It’s not the Oscars.
As always, the Mania press box was prepared: hot dogs, chicken sandwiches, macaroni and cheese, quail (at least I think/hope it was quail), coleslaw, cookies and cake . Unlike the Houston Astros, WWE doesn’t charge reporters to eat. If you’ve ever stumbled upon sports media, you understand why the Astros would go broke feeding this group for free.
The day before Mania, crazy moss won the prestigious Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal. Madcap is also branching out into stand-up comedy.
Samples: “I heard that Atlanta is the biggest city in Georgia. It’s funny, though, I didn’t realize they were basing this on weight.
“What do you call a Battle Royal named after the smartest Texans around? A cattle royal.
Shecky has to stick with the fight.
With 77,899 fans thronging AT&T Stadium, here are the results from Night One (Saturday) of The Showcase of the Immortals:
Jimmy and Jey Uso successfully defended their Smackdown tag titles by fending off the challenge of Shinsuke Nakamura and Rick Boogs. I missed most of that game because I went back to the restaurant when I heard they had hot dogs with sauerkraut, the condiment industry’s unsung hero.
Charlotte Flair retained her women’s title on Smackdown by pinning the former MMA superstar Ronda Rousey in a controversial match. Rousey locked an armbar on Flair, which got the champion tapped out. However, the referee didn’t hear Flair leave because he was busy passing out from an earlier collision.
When he came to his senses, Flair kicked Rousey in the head and took the win. I feel revenge.
Seth fucking Rollins fell on the way back Cody Rhodes, who was the surprise fighter handpicked by Mr. McMahon. Rhodes spent the last few years with a rival organization before signing with WWE several weeks ago.
Bianca Belair won the Raw Women’s Title by defeating Big Time Becks Becky Lynch in a brutal match that absolutely stole the show from Mania.
the miz and Logan Paul upset the father-son team of Rey and Dominick Mysterio. I would wear one barrel with nothing underneath today if I had bet on this game. While celebrating their victory, the Miz sucker shot Paul and returned to the locker room. Thanks for nothing. Sorry, not sorry.
This year’s WWE Hall of Fame inductees are: Undertaker, Queen Sharmell, Steiner Brothers and Vader. Queen Sharmell and her husband Book T (also HOF) live in Houston.
Second night (Sunday) on the biggest stage of all:
Raw Tag Champions RK-Brother (Randy Orton and Riddle) kept their belts in a slobberknocker against Alpha Academy and the Street Profits.
the Almighty Bobby Lashley speared and pinned the previously undefeated giant Omos.
donkey star Johnny Knoxville continue reading on CultureMap.com.